In the latest legal proceeding, a federal appeals court ruled that Napster can resume its song-swapping operations over the Internet. The decision by the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturned U.S. District Judge Marilyn Hall Patel's order that demanded that Napster remain offline until it fully complied with an injunction to remove all copyrighted music. The service is currently up and running. In other Napster news, the file-swapping service struck a worldwide licensing deal with the UK's Association of Independent Music and the Independent Music Companies Association on behalf of the UK and European independent record sectors.
Yahoo! Inc. purchased Launch Media Inc. for an approximate $12 million. The acquisition supports Yahoo!'s overall strategy to deliver online entertainment, including Launch's music content. Yahoo! was recently chosen as the distribution platform for Universal Vivendi's and Sony's subscription service, pressplay. In other Launch Media news, Universal Music Group has settled with Launch in their copyright infringement suit in connection with Launch's Internet radio service, Launchcast. A U.S. District Court confirmed that Launchcast is eligible for a statutory license for the transmission of sound recordings over the Web.
Tagging along the Internet buzz, MP3.com has become an affiliate of Universal Vivendi/Sony's pressplay service, situating it on the other side from Napster, which has signed on with AOL Time Warner, Bertelsmann, EMI and RealNetworks's Musicnet service.